RandomTouch (Andrew's vector plug-ins volume 20) Introduction Plug-in set contains plugins for randomness. The set can be used to create stunning particle effects to background designs and abstract illustrations and much more. Also comes with a small selection of royalty-free example symbols Hope you find the plugin set of use and interest Andrew
Installation of plug-ins PC: Please place the GX20_Background.aip GX20_Pyramid.aip GX20_RambleShambles.aip GX20_RandomClutter.aip into the CS4: C:\program files\adobe\adobe illustrator CS4 \plug-ins folder CS3: C:\program files\adobe\adobe illustrator CS 3\plug-ins folder CS2(12): C:\program files\adobe\adobe illustrator CS 2\plug-ins folder CS1(11): C:\program files\adobe\adobe illustrator CS\plug-ins folder 10: C:\program files\adobe\illustrator 10\plug-ins
MAC OS X: Please place the GX20_Background GX20_Pyramid GX20_RambleShambles GX20_RandomClutter files into CS4: HD:applications:Adobe Illustrator CS4:plug-ins CS3: HD:Applications:Adobe Illustrator CS3:plug-ins CS2(12): HD:Applications:Adobe Illustrator CS2:plug-ins CS1(11): HD:Applications:Adobe Illustrator CS:plug-ins 10: HD:Applications:Adobe Illustrator 10:plug-ins *** Please note, the plugin folder for CS2 is in a separate 'plugins for Illustrator CS2' and all the contents must be placed in the plugin path for the plugin set to work I woud suggest adding the folders to a sub folder of plug-ins such as 'graphicxtras'. If a folder called 'graphicxtras' does not exist, create one using the finder or explorer new folder functionality and then add the plug-ins to that. Makes it easier to cleanup the plug-ins and isolate them from the native Illustrator plug-ins
Alternate plug-in installation location Because of recent improvements in security, you may wish to install the plug-in sets in an alternate location such as an user account and not the default plug-in folder. If you are using a basic level account and one without admin features, you might not be able to save the AIP plug-in files to the usual folder. Set up an alternate or secondary plug-in folder in your user account and then copy the files there.
To specify an alternate plug-in for Illustrator 速 1) Go to the edit > preferences > plug-ins 2) Check the additional plug-ins folder option 3) Specify / browse for your required file in your user account (such as 'third party plug-ins' etc)
Ramble change of name *** RamblesShambles - the name of the plugin has changed to the correct rambleshambles.aip, so if you are updating, please remove the earlier ramblesshambles with rambleshambles plug-in (my mistake, sorry)
The type plugin is only for AI 10 GX20_RandomType.aip or GX20_RandomType (mac) needs to be placed only in the illustrator 10 plug-ins folder. If you add it to the CS1 or CS2 folders, it will appear but just won't work.
Important note - visual rapid change *** NOTE: Please be very careful with some of the functionality if you suffer from light sensitive problems / issues as using certainly functionality and rapidly changing settings and random fill colors or path strokes, can create an intense set of color changes. This might be same for many different path combinations. This is mainly connected with the interactive drag buttons. Basically, be careful of rapid changes of settings!
Bonus material Please place the symbols in the presets symbols folder. The symbols are royalty-free and can be used in any commercial or hobby project as required. Please note (c) 2005 - 2006 Andrew Buckle / Abneil Software Ltd.
Initial use of plug-ins Please access via the filters menu of Illustrator (CS3 CS2 CS 10) Please access the plug-ins via the object > filtes menu (CS4) for random type: Via the AVP <Type 10>. You will need to simply select the text (or multiple text). You don't need to highlight / select the text, the plugin works on the entire run of text. The plug-in only works in version 10 of Illustrator. For the fill / stroke options, please add these before you use the plug-in as the plug-in doesn't create the fill or stroke. For demo purposes (and this the same for all the plug-ins), use the TUMBLE button or the presets to tryout a range of different settings For random clutter: Via the AVP <Create> menu. The random clutter plug-in doesn't work on previous created text or paths, it generates new paths based on the standard shapes (circles etc) For pyramid, ramble, and background: Select a path or multiple paths or images or symbols or gradient etc (text in 10) and then access the plugins via the AVP <paths> menu
Applications support MAC OSX 10.2 10.3 10.4 .5 98 ME NT XP Vista Adobe 速 Illustrator 速10 CS1 CS2 CS3 CS4 The randomtype plugin only works in 10.
Questions Please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Other plugins are available on the site http://www.graphicxtras.com
Updates / upgrades Upgrades are generally available, either as free updates or inexpensive updates / upgrades.
Serial number Please store the reference serial number or details of order (this is in the folder marked 'serial number'). Please store this offline as well. You can use this to download updates etc
Copyright The plugins are copyright of 1999-2008, Abneil Software Ltd (Andrew Buckle). This product was released by Abneil Software ltd (UK based company)
Trademarks Illustrator and Adobe and Photoshop are registered trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated. We have no connection whatsoever with Adobe. Adobe product screen shot(s) reprinted with permission from Adobe Systems Incorporated.
General details for all plug-ins 'Tumble' button All the plug-ins comes with a tumble button. The tumble button is useful for experimenting with a wide range of settings. The results can be subtle as well as extreme, depending on the original paths or text selected. The tumble button randomizes the settings between reasonable extremes, but not to the extreme of the individual field settings
'Shuffle' button Only randomizes the internal setting and doesn't modify the displayed value. Only useful if the setting is set for randomization (such as random width or random size)
'Drag' buttons Some of the fields have a button beside them and these can be used to interactively set the field by selecting the drag button and holding the shift key down and dragging across (or in some cases up and down) across the document
'View' / zoom The view setting can modify the zoom / view of the document (within the plug-in use). You can, of course, modify the zoom level as normal before or after using the plug-in via the navigator etc. This feature does not work interactively in Illustrator 10 (for some odd reason). The view / zoom is found in the bottom right of the dialog (all dialogs)
'Presets' A dropdown selection of presets (it is intended at a later point to add a more flexible open / save presets approach). The preset is a collection of settings such as 'pattern settings and copies and fill mode to random'. They may be useful as an aid to understanding some of the plug-in functionality
Background plug-in Plugin to create a background / texture / designs. The plug-in takes a selected path (this can be a path or multiple paths or an image or a symbol or gradient etc) and generates multiple copies throughout the defined area (this might be the entire document or the document view area or perhaps only a portion or a frame of the selected area) You can use text in Illustrator 速 10 but not in CS1 or CS 2 (as with random type, all the text elements of the program
Plug-ins notes changed with these versions) A workaround for the text issue, copy the text to the symbols palette and then use the text as a symbol. Symbols can be used in the background or other plug-ins.
Background - Texture dialog 'Copies': Number of copies of the selected path (paths)
'Scale Horz(%)': Scaling applied between minimum and maximum, horizontally
'Scale Vert (%)': Scaling applied to the paths (randomly) between minimum and maximum. 'Rotation': Rotation / angle applied between minimum and maximum
Background - Type dialog 'Fill density options': By default, the paths are placed randomly throughout the document. The plugin can be set to create the paths as a cross or spray or in one corner of the document.
'Midpoint': Sets the midpoint for the distribution. More useful for the factor settings in the density settings.
Background - Density (Factors) dialog 'Scale edge/center': Scales the paths depending on distance from 'edge' or 'middle' (this is modified using the midpoint settings). This is useful for creating small or large textured 'items' around the edge as a frame or spatial design.
'Rotation edge/center': The path's rotation or angle is modified by the angle factor (it needs to have an angle setting, so for maximum variability, set the angle to 360)
'Fill edge/center': The fill (if set) is modified depending on its position relative to the edge or middle of the document (dependent on the midpoint and density setting)
'Width edge/center': Width / line weight is modified by the relative position from edge and middle.
'Opacity edge/center': Opacity setting is modified by distance from edge / center
Background - Settings dialog 'Fill [R]': Paths are randomly filled with color (depending on the color mode of path and document and whether it has a fill in the first place) 'Stroke [R]': Path's stroke set to random colors 'Width [R]': Line weight / width of lines set randomly from 0 to original line weight for selected path 'Opacity [R]': Opacity is randomly set between 0 and 100 'Blend [R]': The path's blend modes are randomly set to difference, multiply, etc 'Link scale': The vertical scaling of the path is linked to the horizontal scaling 'Drop shadow': Creates a basic shadow a couple of points away from the original. Not totally effective as the path's shadow inherits the style from the path, and if this is a photoshop plugin or color effect, the shadow also ends up the same way, This is requires as it is tricky to determine different styles (the possibilities are endless), some alter the form of the path and others solely the color etc
'Shadow direction': Ignored if drop shadow is not enabled. Instead of placing the shadow at 10 / 10 points from the path, the direction of the path can be randomly varied. 'Shadow opacity (R)': The opacity of the generated shadow is varied 'Half fill shadow': Instead of creating a black shadow, the shadow is based on the fill color (or half of it) 'Shadow scaling': Instead of just having a shadow based on the size of the current path, the path's shadow is scaled vertically to create different kinds of shadow. 'Scale / rotation [R]': Path's rotation and scaling is defined by the minimum and maximum settings (any value in between these settings). If set to off, the maximum value is used as is and no randomization is applied. If you wish the path's to be all rotated by 45 degrees without randomization, set this checkbox to off and set the maximum rotation field to 45 (the minimum will not be enabled) 'Selected center': Scaling is applied based on the selected paths and not the individual path center. 'Layer': Place the paths on a new layer 'Delete original': Delete original path after clicking OK (during preview, the original path is displayed) 'Warp [R]': Applies a randomized envelope / warp to the paths. As the warp uses elements outside of a 'basic path', tiling etc ignores any envelopes. The warps applied are the standard 'arc' etc and bend settings. This is applied randomly to all paths generated, the end result can be a serious mess or an amazing artwork The warp feature can result in slow processing if there are many paths selected or paths to generate The envelope still remains on exit, you will need to select and expand as required. 'View Limit': By default, the plugin generates the paths within the bounds of the document but by selecting the view limit option, the paths are generated within the view limits. If you zoom into a particular region and then apply the plugin, the paths will be generated only in a small part of the document (or if you zoom out, the path's will be generated throughout the document and the space / art board beyond. The edge / middle etc and density settings (sort of) match the view limits settings but there are issues with varying midpoints and view regions, so a perfect match to the 'document' settings is not always possible. Still, the view limit option offers many interesting design possibilities (especially combined with the pattern feature) Change the view region and re-apply, creating paths in a different region of the document, perhaps overlapping or not with the original selection 'Fill swatch [R]': Set the fill with swatches in the current swatches palette. If you wish to have the background paths filled with blue, fill the document swatch palette with blue swatches (or variants or blue). Useful for applying gradients and pattern swatches. The swatches palette needs to be pre-configured before using the plugin.
Plug-ins notes Only paths can be filled, if you have selected images or symbols etc, the swatches feature is ignored
'Stroke swatch [R]': As the fill but for the stroke element of the path. 'Create [R]': Randomly creates (50-50) paths. By default, the background is filled with as many paths as the 'copies' set. If create is set to ON, the number of copies will be a lot less than set value. This is more useful for multiple selections of paths such as converted text or multiple symbols, as some elements will be generated and others will be missing. 'Basic pattern': This option duplicates all the background paths and creates a pattern / tile using the paths (so if you generate 100 paths, the pattern will add another 300 more). The pattern feature doesn't work well in conjunction with warp but the shadow / fill etc are all tiled. Path overlapping is an issue with the pattern feature and so a perfect pattern is not always possible (especially at the center of the pattern tile). The plugin doesn't create or define the pattern, you will need to do this via the define pattern command (if required)
Pyramid plug-in Plugin to create a 'pyramid' of paths. The paths can be a single path, multiple selected paths, compound paths (though not complex ones), images, symbols, etc. Text can be used only in version 10 of Illustrator 速
Pyramid - Base dialog The base of the pyramid
Plug-ins notes 'Blocks': Number of blocks in the base
'Gap between blocks': Gap / distance between base blocks
'Gap options': Additional option to accumulate, randomize the gap between blocks
Pyramid - Floors dialog The 'layers' or 'floors' of the pyramid 'Reduce': Reduces the number of layers / floors of the pyramid
'Gap between floors': Gap between the layers / floors
'Gap options': Gap options for the pyramid layers such as accumulate or randomized
Pyramid - Settings dialog 'Fill [R]': Fill the paths with random colors 'Stroke [R]': Fill the path's stroke with random color (requires a stroke color in the first place) 'Width [R]': Line weight or width. Modifies the width randomly between 0 and the original line width 'Opacity [R]': Randomly sets the opacity between 0 and 100
'Blend [R]': Randomly sets the blending mode for paths to difference, multiply, etc 'Link gap': Links the gap / options of 'floors' to the 'base' settings. 'Fill swatch [R]': Fills the paths with a random swatch. Takes precedence to the fill [R] 'Stroke swatch [R]': As fill, but for strokes. Does not create the stroke, so please add the stroke to the path before applying the plug-in 'Warp [R]': Warps the paths in the pyramid randomly
'Alternate': Alternate paths in the pyramid are doubled in size
'Drop shadow': Creates a basic shadow a couple of points away from the original. Not totally effective as the path's shadow inherits the style from the path, and if this is a photoshop plugin or color effect, the shadow also ends up the same way, This is requires as it is tricky to determine different styles (the possibilities are endless), some alter the form of the path and others solely the color etc
'Shadow direction': Ignored if drop shadow is not enabled. Instead of placing the shadow at 10 / 10 points from the path, the direction of the path can be randomly varied. 'Shadow opacity (R)': The opacity of the generated shadow is varied 'Half fill shadow': Instead of creating a black shadow, the shadow is based on the fill color (or half of it) 'Shadow scaling': Instead of just having a shadow based on the size of the current path, the path's shadow is scaled vertically to create different kinds of shadow
RambleShambles plug-in Plugin to create a spray or jittered (particles) set of paths (or images or symbols or gradients or multiple selected paths or compounds etc). Text can also be used in version 10. 'Number of copies': Number of copies in spray
'Jitter': Direction of the spray, vertical or horizontal
'Scale/copies': Apply a scaling factor to each path created in the spray, shrinking or growing the paths
'Fill [R]': Randomizes the fill color of the path 'Stroke [R]': Randomizes the stroke color of the path 'Width [R]': Randomizes the stroke width of the path
'Fill swatches [R]': Applies random swatches to the generated paths (from the document swatch palette). Takes precedence to the fill
'Stroke swatches [R]': As with fill, but for stroke. Doesn't add strokes to the path, please pre-configure the stroke before using the plug-in 'Direction [R]': Randomizes the direction (using the jitter (horizontal) to define the range. Useful for re-applies to create multiple scatter / particle directions
'Basic pattern': Creates a pattern / tile centered on the original path position (generates three additional paths in opposite directions)
RandomClutter plug-in Plugin to create a random display of stars, squares, rectangles, circles, ovals, ...
RandomClutter - Shapes Dialog 'Number of shapes': Number of shapes to create (approx.)
'Fill density options': By default, paths are created throughout the document, the density settings can place them in a cross, as rain, spray, random along a line, etc
'Shape set': The shape set to work on, such as the rectangle settings (the other settings are not displayed until the dropdown is set to stars etc)
'Active': The shape is active. If off, and the rectangle shape is set, then no rectangles will be created (not strictly true as there are also polygons and a four sided polygon looks remarkably rectangular) 'Shape Settings': (variable) There are a number of shape settings, each shape has its own group of settings. The settings are randomly generated in between the minimum (left setting) and maximum (right setting). Most of the settings are related to the size such as the radius, but some are for the number of points in a star (so if you want a wide variation of points, set a low minimum and a high maximum). A wide variety of shapes can be created by varying the shape settings.
RandomClutter - Rotate dialog 'Rotation min / max': The angle / rotation of the path randomized between the minimum and maximum setting. If set to 0 0 then zero rotation is applied
'User defined center': Defines the center for rotation, only useful if the checkbox for user defined rotation is set.
RandomClutter - Settings dialog 'Fill [R]': Fill the shapes with random colors 'Fill swatch [R]': Fills the shapes with swatches from the swatches palette. Supersedes the basic random fill. 'Stroke [R]': Randomly fills the stroke (if set) with random colors 'Stroke swatch [R]': As fill swatches, but for strokes
'Width [R]': Randomly sets the width of the generated path between 0 and the current width setting 'Opacity [R]': Randomly sets the opacity (transparency) of the path between 0 and 100
'Rotate - defined': If set, use the user defined setting (this will enable the rotation center fields). By default, the path center is used
'Rotate - path center': Use this to define the center around the path's center. By default, this is the center used 'Even mix': Attempts to create an even mix of shapes instead of more rectangles or more stars 'Reverse path': Reverses the paths, this can create some extreme results depending on the settings generated
'Create new layer': Creates all the shapes on a new layer 'Drop shadow': Creates a basic shadow a couple of points away from the original. Not totally effective as the path's shadow inherits the style from the path, and if this is a photoshop plugin or color effect, the shadow also ends up the same way, This is requires as it is tricky to determine different styles (the possibilities are endless), some alter the form of the path and others solely the color etc
'Shadow direction': Ignored if drop shadow is not enabled. Instead of placing the shadow at 10 / 10 points from the path, the direction of the path can be randomly varied. 'Shadow opacity (R)': The opacity of the generated shadow is varied 'Half fill shadow': Instead of creating a black shadow, the shadow is based on the fill color (or half of it) 'Shadow scaling': Instead of just having a shadow based on the size of the current path, the path's shadow is scaled vertically to create different kinds of shadow. 'Basic pattern': Creates a tile / pattern based on the generated path (if 100 shapes set, 300 additional shapes will be generated in the opposite directions). The shadow etc are all used within the pattern The main issue for the pattern is the overlapping of paths, this is more of an issue in the center of the tiling region.
RandomType plug-in (works in Illustrator 10 ONLY) Select text (on a path or text area or normal text) and apply. Don't select the individual letters, the plugin doesn't work that way. The plug-in also only works in 10. The plug-in text suites changes radically with CS 1 and 2, so please don't expect any update for a while!
RandomType - Random dialog
Plug-ins notes 'Font size options': Set how the randomization will be applied (based on the font size value), setting the font size randomly between 0 and current value or accumulated or based on position or applying the size based on a pulse setting to create type zigzag.
'Font size': Set the font size randomly between 0 and value (depends on the font size dropdown as well as the 'add' setting). The size of the font will then be randomly set on a letter by letter basis, so 's' might be 20 points, 'p' might be 10.45 points etc. Use this on a small set of letters or perhaps a whole page of text or text on a path
'Baseline shift options': Apply randomness to the baseline shift setting (see the text palette)
'Shift': Shift value used (varied by the related dropdown) to raise or lower the text position. As with all the settings, please modify the limits if you want to use more extreme settings. If the limit is set to 0 and 300 and the setting is calculated as 500 then the value set will be 300.
'Tracking options': Crunching the text based on the tracking options and tracking setting
'Tracking': Value used (varied by the tracking options) to modify (randomly) the tracking setting for the text on a letter by letter basis (shrinks or widens the gaps between characters) 'Scaling (H) options': By default this is off. Sets the horizontal scaling options.
'Scaling horizontal': Sets the horizontal scaling for the text on a letter by letter basis (squeezing or extending the characters) 'Scaling (V) options': Sets the vertical scaling for the letters
'Scaling vertical': Sets the vertical scaling (depending on the dropdown) on a letter by letter basis to create tall or very crunched letters.
RandomType - Pulse dialog 'Pulse': This is used by some of the dropdowns on the random dialog screen. If the setting doesn't have pulse in the text then the pulse will be ignored. The pulse is used to create an accumulation and then return to the original setting and then accumulation in batches
RandomType - Limits dialog 'Size limit': Limits the overall size of the font, so to create a wide range of random sized text, set a low minimum and a large maximum. To cutoff the text say at 40 points, then set the maximum to 40pts so all the size randomness will be beneath 40pts and some of the text will be stuck at 40pts and no more 'Shift limit': As with size, but for baseline shift 'Tracking limit': As with size, but for tracking 'Scaling (H) limit': As with size, but for horizontal scaling 'Scaling (V) Limit': As with size, but for vertical scaling
RandomType - Fill dialog 'Fill': Fills the letters with color, useful for creating colorful blends from letter to letter or colorful pulsed lettering or random filled letters. if you select the random swatch option, the current swatches will be used to fill the characters, so if you wish to have blue-ish text then fill the swatches palette with variants of blue. The gradient swatches are ignored (to fill with a gradient you will need to turn the text into outline)
'Stroke': Stroke applied to the letters, depending on the dropdown. By default, this is off. If you select text without a stroke, the plugin will generate a gray stroke (color of none...) so if you wish to use this option, please add a stroke to the path
Plug-ins notes beforehand. If you select the random swatches option, color swatches are used as well as patterns but gradients are ignored.
'Width': Line width applied to the text on a letter by letter basis. By default, set to off. As with above, please add a stroke beforehand, the plug-in doesn't create the stroke (or text)
'Opacity': Opacity applied to the letters on a letter by letter basis and dependent on the opacity dropdown. In most cases, you will have to use negative settings as the original opacity is probably 100%. So to fade the text, set the value to -50 etc or for a gradient, -5% (depending on the number of characters)
RandomType - Settings dialog 'Add to current size': Add any randomness to the current size (this is on by default). If the text size is 200 and then limit is 250, there will be little randomness. If the text is small and the setting is large, the randomization result will be greater than large text and a small randomization setting. Setting the Add to OFF, will result, depending on the size setting and original font size, on very small text
'Add to current shift': Add to the current shift setting 'Add to current tracking': Add to the current tracking setting for the letter 'Add to current horizontal scaling': Add to the current horizontal scaling 'Add to current vertical scaling': Add to the current vertical scaling (this is displayed in the character palette) 'Reverse order processing': Instead of applying the position and processing of the letters from left to right, apply the process starting from the other direction 'Random font': Instead of using the original font (which might be all the same font), set the text to different fonts for each letter. This might result in readable text or totally illegible gibberish, depending on the installed fonts (only valid fonts will be displayed, some might fail to be displayed for whatever reason)
This feature is best avoided if you have 'problem fonts'